With two days to spend in the northern outpost of Akureyri, you’ll have enough time to explore the town and its restaurants and galleries, get offshore for some of Iceland’s best whale watching, soak up the dramatic natural scenery of the north, and even sneak in some relaxation. Here’s how to get the most out of 48 hours in Akureyri.
Day 1: Whales and Relaxation
**Morning:**Bundle up this morning for one of Akureyri’s most popular activities: whale watching. Aboard a high-speed boat, head out into Eyjafjord in search of humpback whales, minke whales, harbor porpoises, and dolphins. Sightings are almost guaranteed in summer.
**Afternoon:**Warm up this afternoon with a uniquely Icelandic form of relaxation at the Beer Spa. Step into a hoppy bath of young beer and live beer yeast to help ease sore muscles and cleanse the skin. Each tub has its own tap of cold beer as well, so you can imbibe as you soak.
**Night:**Polish off your first day in Akureyri by treating your tastebuds to some local flavors on a guided food tour around town. A local foodie will lead the way as you hop from one place to the next, sampling local specialties such as lamb, seafood, traditional Icelandic bread, and the country’s favorite spirit, Brennivín.
Day 2: Diamond Circle
**Morning:**Akureyri makes the perfect base for exploring the natural wonders of Iceland’s Diamond Circle. Spend today on a guided tour of this route, starting with a morning visit to two of the country’s most famous waterfalls, Godafoss and Dettifoss. Don’t forget your camera, as both are spectacular.
**Afternoon:**Continue your journey along the Diamond Circle to Iceland’s fourth-largest lake, the volcanic Lake Myvatn. This geothermically active region is known for its craters and lava formations, as well as an abundance of birdlife (15 species of ducks live here). If time permits, spend some time soaking in the Myvatn nature baths.
**Night:**You’re in one of the best areas of Iceland to see the northern lights, so take this evening to head out in search of the natural phenomenon. Choose between a 4WD tour and a nighttime cruise to escape the light pollution of town, and keep warm with a steaming cup of hot chocolate.